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Dr Ellen Quigley
My report, “Divestment: Advantages and Disadvantages for the University of Cambridge” was released in October 2020, with the aid of supporting authors Anthony Odgers and Emily Bugden. Following the release of the report, the University of Cambridge committed to: Divest its endowment; increase its investments in renewable energy and achieve net-zero across its entire investment portfolio by 2038.
The commitment to decarbonise its portfolio by 2038 is a particular achievement since it is unique for a university endowment of its size and structure. My approach, focusing on activating the University as a ‘universal owner’, has decarbonisation impacts beyond the commitment itself. Universal owners recognise that a majority of their value comes from the health and stability of the economy as a whole and thus rapid decarbonisation is a priority. The University and college endowments have an ability to drive decarbonisation through leveraging their ownership power in impact-oriented strategies to drive corporate change.
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